Classic FM Top 300 2012

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Rapier, Apr 8, 2012.

  1. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    Just listening to Classic FM and heard Leyland at number 130 something playing Penlee.

    Good grief, is that the best Brass Band piece people could vote for? What a row.
  2. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    You, sir, are a philistine. Without a capital P.
  3. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    Come on, its even higher than the Hummel Trumpet concerto. Now that's proper music, not some dirge of a test piece.
  4. Andy Moore

    Andy Moore Member

    Totally disagree. It's a great piece.
  5. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    It wasn't written as a test piece. As far as I am aware, it hasn't been used as one either, although I wouldn't mind betting that once it penetrates the consciousness of the cloth caps who set the Nationals test pieces, it might suffer that fate. It's a highly descriptive piece that concerns itself with the loss of the Penlee lifeboat 30 years ago and is dedicated to the memory of those who lost their lives. I rated it as Mr Dobson's best piece for band so far, until I heard his Symphony of Colours earlier this year. My advice - don't judge a piece on a single hearing.

    As it's in the Hall of Fame, presumably many other people agree with that analysis.
  6. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    Don't judge it on one hearing? Well I certainly don't want to hear it again. Seriously, I thought it was awful. As did my wife, who kept telling me to turn it off.

    Each to there own I guess, but no advert for Brass Bands, in my opinion.
  7. Penlee is amazing! Performed it with Gwent Youth many times. its atmospheric, exciting and emotive.. and unlike a lot of Brass Band music its interesting to the casual listener! I say this sort of peice makes banding look good, and would like to see more peices like it!
  8. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    I'm a Brass Band fan and I thought it was a dirge, I'm sure a lot of 'casual listeners' would think the same. Even the Presenter said, '' A lot of Brass Banders must have voted that in.''

    Apects of Amedius it certainly isn't and the Brass version of that, or Black Dykes The Armed Man, would show Brass Bands in a better light to the normal music listener. Again, only my opinion. I mean I don't even like March of the Smurfs. Or ANYTHING arranged by Barnaerts.:cool:
  9. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Playing something like The Armed Man by Dyke is exactly what Classic ~won't~ do. One of the many reasons that brass bands came so low down in the original survey that defined the station's demographic when it was launched is that 'all' they do (in many people's perception) is play arrangements from other genres....many of them claimed to be 'second rate'.....
  10. Interestingly enough, i'm actually repeating the opinions of some 'casual listeners' after hearing us play it! They said it was very different from the usual stuff churned out by brass bands.

    Penlee is very different from a lot of band stuff, so will no doubt attract some criticism, but I say its a very good peice that shows brass band music can have a modern, innovative approach, that does interest listeners, no harm in a bit of variety! :)
  11. katieeuph

    katieeuph Member

    Tom, I was a bit of a neutral on this thread as I have to say, for my shame, I've never listened to the piece before. I just had a listen to the Gwent recordingon YouTube from the RAH (I think Paul H is conducting but even he looks small!). I thought it was fantastic!! Well done band and fantastic writing from the composer. I know that area of Cornwall well and have many relations there, so connect greatly with the subject matter - maybe understanding that makes a difference. Anyway, great IMO for the 'wider public' to hear and worth a 2nd listen!!
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2012
  12. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    'Casual listeners' to Classic FM, you mean? Yes, I'm sure you're right, as that phrase accurately describes Classic FM's total audience. The station is squarely aimed at people with conservative musical tastes, who know what they like, like what they know, and don't want to be troubled with any sound which they might regard as 'new', 'different', or indeed anything much beyond their attention span of about 10 minutes. Nothing wrong with that of course, but if such peoples' attitude had prevailed over music during the past 500 years, we'd still be listening to nothing more developed than plainsong - no Tchaikowsky, no Beethoven, no Mozart. So if just one Classic FM listener heard Penlee and decided to explore the band repertoire a little more, it will have been worthwhile. Go on, be a devil, be that person! It's on a CD of the same name by the Leyland Band.
  13. RDTCBD

    RDTCBD Member

    Has any of the top bands made an approach to Classicfm with the view of some kind of partnership, or closer working relationship??
  14. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    I've already spent money seeing Leyland in concert, and very good they were too. Fortunately Penlee wasn't featured. ;)
  15. weenie

    weenie Member

    Just thank the lord that there was a brass band in the top 130 at all! ;-)
  16. Sandy Smith

    Sandy Smith Member

    Classic Fm and the brass band have a rather curious relationship. They don't like our "arrangement" side but are quite happy to broadcast John Ireland's "Downland Suite" or "London ( Comedy) Overture" in arrangements for string orchestra and orchestra respectively. Not to mention the plethora of arrangements of classical music as instrumental solos or songs arranged as solos for 'cello / violin / flute, etc.
    I also note with interest that at number 238 in their chart is some videogame soundtrack music - complete with the tagline of "Fans of video-game soundtracks have voted this new entry into the chart". So we are not the only lovers of a certain musical genre to catch on to this ploy.
    Going back to Penlee IMO it is one of the best works written in the past few years - music of substance, depth and real emotion...... but there is something which doesn't quite sit with it being in this particular chart. It might be me but looking at their website and listening to the presenters it seems that even they don't know what to make of it and don't care for it much but have to include it as "we" have voted for it. It was great to see Penlee on last years list but does anyone know how often it has been broadcast since then and at what time of the day / night ?
    Classic FM is OK as background music in the car or when doing something more important at home but if I want to LISTEN to classical music then I will switch on Radio 3 or put on a CD.
  17. GJG

    GJG Well-Known Member

    Odd, that; you've just described the average brass band audience ...
  18. Glad you enjoyed it! it was an amazing experience! (It was Paul H btw!) I agree that understanding the subject matter helps.

    Thats a thought, if anybody hasn't actually listened to it, heres the Greater Gwent Youth Brass Band playing it at the RAH . :)
  19. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    Indeed. I expect Monsieur Ravel's arrangement of Mussorgsky's piano suite Pictures at an Exhibition will be popping up at some stage in the Hall of Fame. Well, up to 10 minutes of it, anyway....
  20. hobgoblin

    hobgoblin Member

    It seems beyond comprehension that Penlee played by Leyland has got in the chart at the expense of B&R's classic Floral Dance, or Grimey playing William tell outdoors to win the Nationals. I blame the non-criteria based voting process used by classic FM, and think it is about time each voter be made to give their reasons based on pre-set criteria rather that just an arbitrary "vote".

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